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RE: Transylvanian Dinos



Chris Srnka requested information about Transylvanian dinosaurs. In the summer 
of 1997, while I was editor of The Dinosaur Report for The Dinosaur Society, we 
published an update by David Weishampel on his recent important work on 
Transylvanian dinosaurs. The Society is now inactive and even I don't have 
hardcopies of the printed version to give to Dr. Weishampel, but I do have the 
original text which I reproduce below for you all since it is not available at 
the Society website. There were no photos of specimens in this article. David 
also did an interesting article on Nopsca (sp) which I will dig up if people 
show interest. For further information, one might contact Dr. Weishampel at 
Johns Hopkins.

Note: this is David Weishampel's original draft. It includes several 
foreign-language characters that do not translate into plain text, so you may 
see an occasional garbage character.

--Thom Holmes
Dinosaur author at large
--------

1995-1996 Progress Report
The Dinosaurs of Transylvania

Research Funded by the Dinosaur Society

by David B. Weishampel
Professor
Johns Hopkins University
School of Medicine

Field Research

The 1995 field season in the Hateg Basin of western Romania concentrated on 
collecting specimens and stratigraphic and sedimentological information from a 
large bone bed that has been yielding some of the most abundant and diverse 
dinosaur material to come from Transylvania. In 1995, we collected important 
new material of the basal iguanodontian ornithopod Rhabdodon robustus, 
additional postcranial specimens of the dwarfed sauropod Magyarosaurus dacus 
(which also appears to be the last sauropod, known from the latest Cretaceous), 
material of the cryptodiran turtle Kallokibotium bajazidi, and important 
pterosaur remains (the second notarium known from the Hateg Basin; see below). 
In addition, we collected a large, very unusual specimen from another site that 
may prove to be a portion of the skull of a large theropod; preparation work is 
presently underway so that we can make a final determination sometime soon.

Museum Research

Work at the Muzeul Civilizatiei Dacice si Romane Deva, the Magyar cllami 
F?ldtani Intzet in Budapest, and the Muse des Dinosaures in Espraza, France, 
concentrated on data collection for our description and phylogenetic analysis 
of Rhabdodon robustus. In addition, travel to Vienna (co-funded by the National 
Science Foundation) provided the opportunity to examine specimens from the 
Upper Cretaceous Gosau beds of Wiener Neustadt in the collections of the 
Institute of Paleontology, University of Vienna. This fauna, known since the 
1870s, is known to contain close relatives of members of the Hateg fauna. In 
addition to the dinosaur material, of particular interest was the Gosau 
pterosaur specimens, which were most recently studied by Peter Wellnhofer in 
1980. Finally, dinosaur and pterosaur material in the N?rodni Muzeum in Prague 
were examined in order to make a comprehensive comparison of Late Cretaceous 
faunas from central and eastern Europe.

Presentations and Publications

Thanks to funding from The Dinosaur Society it was possible for Weishampel to 
attend the Mesozoic Vertebrate Faunas of Central Europe symposium in Deva, 
Romania (22-24 August, 1996), and for both Weishampel and Jianu to attend the 
Second European Workshop of Vertebrate Paleontology in Quillan, Fmnce (7-10 
May, 1997).

At the Deva symposium, we gave presentations on a new theropod from the Hateg 
Basin (an arctometatarsalian with so-far unresolved affinities), on the 
collection of material from the Hateg fauna in the collections of Cluj 
University, and on the importance of phylogeny in paleobiogeographic analysis. 
The last emphasizes the impact of phylogenetic position on interpretations of 
areas of origin of clades, using titanosaurids and hadrosaurids as examples.

At the Quillan workshop, we presented our work on the veiy rare pterosaurs of 
Transylvania. This included our rediscovery of Nopcsas original (but 
undescribed) pterosaur material, as well as as specimens we recently collected. 
On the basis of features of the shoulder and arm region, we are confident that 
the Transylvanian pterosaur is a pteranodontid pterodactyloid, perhaps even one 
of the basal members of the clade. Equally important is that this pterosaur is 
quite small in comparison to its close relatives, suggesting that it, like some 
of the other members of the Hateg fauna, may be a dwarf.

On the basis of this work, we also reported on our revisionary efforts 
regarding the other European pterosaurs from the Late Cretaceous. The pterosaur 
from Czechia named Ornithocheirus  hlavatschi is also clearly pteranodontid 
that may also occupy a basal position within the clade. Lastly, the humerus 
from Nieder?sterreich that Wellnhofer described as belonging to Pteranodontidae 
may in fact be a member of Nyctosauridae, a clade known otherwise only from 
North and South America.

Publications resulting from funding from The Dinosaur Society and/or relating 
to these meetings include:

Jianu, C. -M. and Weishampel, D. B., 1997. A new theropod dinosaur material 
from the Hateg
Basin (Late Cretaceous, western Romania), a preliminary study. Sargetia 17: 
11-27.

Jianu, C.-M., Mszaros, N., and Codrea, V., 1997. A new collection of Hateg and 
R?pa Rosie material (Dinosauria, Crocodilia, Chelonia) in the Cluj Napoca 
University. Sargetia 17: 219-232.

Weishampel, D. B. and Jianu, C.-M., 1997. The importance of phylogeny in 
paleobiogeographic analyses, with examples from the North American hadrosaurids 
and European titanosaurids, Sagetia 17: 261-278.

Jianu, C.-M. and Weishampel, D. B., 1997, A new theropod dinosaur from the 
Hateg Basin, western Romania, in the collection of the Geological Survey in 
Budapest. Sargetia 17: 239-246.

Jianu, C.-M., Weishampel, D. B., and Stiuca, E., 1997. Old and new pterosaur 
material from the Hateg Basin (Late Cretaceous) of western Romania, and 
comments about pterosaur diversity in the Late Cretaceous of Europe. Second 
European Workshop of Vertebrate Paleontology Abstracts.

-----Original Message-----
From:   Christopher Srnka [SMTP:theclaw@sprintmail.com]
Sent:   Sunday, January 03, 1999 11:32 PM
To:     List Dinosaur
Subject:        Transylvanian Dinos

Could anyone point me to some good refs (preferably drawings and/or
photos of the skeletal remains) for the following:
_Rhabdodon_,_Struthiosaurus_, and _Telmatosaurus_? If none exist,
perhaps some anatomically comparable species? Thanks, please reply
off-list.
-Chris Srnka